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Should You Draft Lamar Jackson or Joe Burrow in Fantasy Football?

Lou breaks down whether you should draft Lamar Jackson or Joe Burrow in fantasy football drafts this season.

CINCINNATI, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 30: Joe Burrow #9 of the Cincinnati Bengals celebrates after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Paul Brown Stadium on September 30, 2021 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

These are two of the most high-profile QBs in the league and in fantasy football. Joe Burrow has remained relatively healthy and has been one of the best around the past couple of years, while Lamar Jackson has been injured often and his production hasn’t come close to resembling his MVP season from 2019. Burrow is the safer pick this season, however, Lamar has an infinite amount of potential, especially with the upgrades the Ravens made to their WR depth this offseason. Lamar can be drafted slightly later than Burrow as well, which might make him a better value in your draft.

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Lamar Jackson Fantasy Football Outlook

We know Lamar can be a top-three QB in fantasy. That is mostly due to his running ability, not his throwing ability, but there are a couple of reasons to be optimistic about Jackson this season. The first is that Jackson has the best group of WRs that he has ever played with in his NFL career. The Ravens have seemingly lacked in that position for years and have had to rely on their ground game, including Jackson. That brings me to my next point on Jackson. He hasn’t been able to stay healthy over the past couple of seasons, and a lot of that has to do with him running with the football too much. He has said that he plans on throwing the football a lot more in 2023, which some people look at as a negative because it hurts his upside in fantasy, however, I see it as a positive because he can stay healthy and produce for you every week. Odell Beckham Jr., Zay Flowers, and Rashod Bateman, is a serious upgrade over his previous WR rooms and he still has an elite TE in Mark Andrews.

Joe Burrow Fantasy Football Outlook

Burrow has been one of the best and most consistent QBs in fantasy football since the arrival of Ja’Marr Chase in Cincinnati. The only reason why Burrow isn’t thought of among the truly elite tier is that he doesn’t add much fantasy production with his legs. QBs like Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen and Jalen Hurts all contribute on the ground and it’s what separates them from Burrow. In terms of throwing the football, Burrow is someone who could lead the league in yards and TDs in any given season. Burrow is expected to throw for 35 TDs and 4,500-5,000 yards every season, and it helps that he has an amazing group of WRs to throw to. He is likely to be the fourth or fifth QB off the board this season, and he seems like a lock to return that exact value. However, he could also end up landing among the top three in scoring if he takes another step forward in his development in what will be his fourth NFL season.

Bottom Line

It’s hard to go wrong with either of these QBs and which one you select will be a matter of preference. Take Burow if you want a near-guaranteed top-six fantasy option, although he might not come with a top-tier ceiling. Drafting Lamar comes with more risk, but also a greater likelihood of hitting a truly elite fantasy season.